|View From a Height
Commentary from the Mile High City
Monday, July 19, 2004
State Attorney General Ken Salazar has decided he's John Edwards. At least, he's decided that that's the campaign he wants to run.
What are the characteristics of an Edwards campaign? A liberal trying to appear centrist. This can work if people don't know you all that well. It worked, for instance, in North Carolina, the first time. Now, Edwards is too well-known to win a second term.
The rest of the campaign is lifted directly from Edwards. He talks about "two Colorados." He's the guy from a dirt-poor background who became a lawyer and got out. He's kind of stuck with the trial-lawyer thing, because of all the support they've given him.
It helps if you're an attorney general. It gives you the dual advantage of being "for the little guy" and being "for law and order." It also gives you a record to defend. In theory, this should be easy. The popular stuff you own. The unpopular stuff you blame on the legislature. That line of defense is harder, though, if you bail when the legislature goes against your party. So much for defending state sovereignty.
It helps if you have Mike Miles as an opponent. But it doesn't help so much if you have to put your positions down in black and white. Or as little black and white as you can get away with. Take a look at the list, and see if you can find where Salazar differs from the traditional, liberal (although not Leftist) party line.
It's going to be the job of the Republican candidate to point this out.